In which Moneypenny can't seem to get away


“Flight 627 to Buenos Aires is ready for boarding, all first class passengers may commence boarding” the speakers resonate as I start to make my way towards gate A37.

I board the plane and get comfortable in my front row seat, seat 1A, courtesy of my unexpected tour guide, whom I ‘accidentally’ bumped into when I arrived in La Paz almost three weeks ago. As the flight attendant serves me my glass of ‘champagne’ I gaze out the window and try to make sense of everything that’s happened in the past month.

I left Buenos Aires, desperate to get away from it all; from Sabrina’s watchful eyes; Bond’s overbearing advice; M evaluating me like I was some piece of real estate; I felt, I feel I should say, like everyone’s puppet. I had hoped that La Paz would give me the distance I needed to decide what to do, little did I know that I’d be leaving even more confused than when I arrived.I barely had enough time to pick up my over-sized backpack when I felt a gentle tap on my shoulder; I turned around and there he was: “How lovely to bump into to you here my dear”, he uttered, “Had I known you were coming to my homeland, I would have planned a proper welcoming party”, he continued.

“Richard! What are you doing here? I didn’t know you were Bolivian”, I blurted out, a little incredulously, to which he answered that his mother (to the great disappointment of his father’s aristocratic ‘white European’ family) was Bolivian and that he had spent many childhood summers in the altiplano of his motherland.

“Are you here, to visit family?” I continued. “No, I am here on business, in fact if you’re interested I would love to show you around my country. Let me show you what Bolivia is, the beauties of its land and of its people. Surely, Miss Moneypenny, you can’t refuse such a tempting offer”, he said very confidently.

What was he talking about? Travel with him? Had he followed me here? Why couldn’t I get a moment’s peace! At the same time, I was a little curious and I felt that Richard would not settle for a no, no matter what excuse I would come up with.

“A tempting offer by your own account, why should I be tempted to accept you?” I retorted with a smile.

“Fair enough, but you won’t know until you try, and besides from the looks of that backpack, you don’t have any fixed plans, so why not give me chance? A few days is all I ask, if you’re not pleased you can go, what do you have to lose?”

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